Grants and fundings

Research funding in the School of EE&T

The School of Electrical Engineering and Telecommunications consistently demonstrates outstanding success in securing national competitive grants such as the Australia Research Council (ARC) grants.

Other sources of research funding include various state and federal government bodies, industry and major private organisations. Listed below is some recent funding secured by researchers in the School.

In addition to School funding, the various research centres with which the School is closely affiliated are in receipt of signifiant annual funding.

Discovery Grants 2019

Professor David Taubman; “Efficient multi-view video coding with cuboids and base anchored models” ($380,000)

Professor Andrey Savkine “Control and state estimation in the next-generation interconnected systems” ($380,000)

Professor Jinhong Yuan; Dr Wing Kwan Ng “Millimetre wave communications for mobile broadband systems” ($450,000)

Professor Eliathamby Ambikairajah, Professor Julien Epps and Dr Vidhyasaharan Sethu; “Integrating biologically-inspired auditory models into deep learning” ($385,000)


ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher 2019

Dr Jarryd Pla “Superconducting hybrid quantum technologies” ($405,000)

Dr Lei Yang “Extremely-high-speed and reliable coding for next generation communications” ($398,000)


Linkage Grants 2019

Dr Beena Ahmed, Prof Julien Epps, Dr Vidhya Sethu, Prof Eliathamby Ambikairajah “AusKidTalk: an Australian children's speech corpus” ($600,000)


Linkage Grants 2017

Associate Professor Wei Zhang; Professor Lingyang Song; Dr Shaohui Sun

Project title: Efficient Signal Transmission Techniques for Large Scale Antenna Systems


ARC Funding Awarded: $285,000     [2017-2020]


Associate Professor Julien EppsDr Vidhyasaharan Sethu, Dr Michael Chen, Dr Mark Larsen, Professor Helen Christensen; 

Project title: Automatic Speech-based Assessment of Mental State via Mobile Device

Partner Organisations: Sonde Health, US; Black Dog Institute

ARC Funding Awarded: $303,000      [2017-2020 ]


Linkage Grants 2016

Professor Branko CellerProfessor Andrey Savkin; Professor Siaw-Teng Liaw; Dr Karen Irvine; Mr Norm Good


Project Summary: This project aims to reduce unscheduled admissions to hospital, by developing statistical models of people’s health using longitudinal measurements of vital signs and questionnaires. Hospital costs are becoming unsustainable and will overwhelm state budgets within thirty years. Telehealth monitoring to manage chronic disease is becoming increasingly routine internationally and should reduce unnecessary hospital admissions and health service costs. To scale up telehealth services nationally, automated means of assessing changes in an individual health status are needed. This project’s automated risk assessment models are expected to identify exacerbations and orchestrate an optimal response from health services to reduce unscheduled admissions to hospital

Total: $270,000


Professor Josep Pou; Professor Vassilios Agelidis; Dr Alireza Nami; Dr Frans Dijkhuizen; Dr Georgios Demetriades


Project Summary: This project aims to deliver new and advanced converter hardware and control designs with drastically smaller reactive components that are cheaper to convert, more reliable and compact. Voltage and current-sourced modular multilevel converters have delivered the required voltage/current/power ratings for utility applications such as static compensators and high-voltage direct current transmission. However, these energy storage components, including embedded batteries, are overwhelmingly large. Anticipated outcomes are that compact, cheaper and even more efficient power electronic energy converters will enable much needed sustainable energy grids; reduce the cost of integrating renewable energy generation in the grid and achieve even more efficient electronic control of electric systems.

Total: $280,000


Associate Professor Wei Zhang; Professor Lingyang Song; Dr Shaohui Sun


Project Summary: This project aims to design future generation wireless network technologies for 5G cellular networks, whose new and advanced spectrum and interference management technologies can improve the network capacity and radio spectrum efficiency. This is pressing, as the current fourth generation (4G) cellular communications technology will soon not be able to meet increasing demands for high-speed wireless access. This project is intended to bring revolutionary change in the mobile wireless communications and benefit billions of people worldwide

Total: $220,000


Professor Jinhong Yuan; Dr Wing Kwan Ng; Dr Xingqing Cheng; Mr Raja Pillai


Project Summary This project aims to develop communications protocols and algorithms to enable energy-efficient, reliable and low latency machine-to-machine (M2M) networks, connecting a massive number of heterogeneous machine type devices. M2M communications are key to unlocking the Internet of Things’s potential to improve economic productivity and life quality. This project will develop new theories and devise a proof-of-concept M2M test-bed to evaluate and verify the proposed technologies. The intended outcomes of the project are to contribute to the global standardisation of M2M networks and the new type of world-class wireless infrastructure, as an integral part of the emerging digital society.

Total: $466,000


Discovery Grants 2018

Professor Victor Solo and Dr Syed Pasha; “Vector network system identification” ($353,000)

Professor Victor Solo and Professor Gregory Chirikjian, “Modeling stochastic systems in Riemannian manifolds” ($363,000)

Professor Zhao Yang (Joe) Dong; Dr Guo Chen (new Scientia Fellow) and Professor David Hill; “Power system security assessment given massive intermittent energy sources” ($403,000)

Professor Andrea Morello, Dr Jarryd Pla and Professor Klaus Moelmer; “Observing the quantum chaotic trajectories of a single nucleus” ($387,000)

(In collaboration with RMIT)

Professor Donald Holmes; Professor John Fletcher; Associate Professor Brendan McGrath; Dr Lasantha Meegahapola, “Advanced inverter control for distributed energy systems” ($363K)


Discovery Grants 2016

Professor Andrew Dzurak; Adjunct Professor Mikko Mottonen; Dr Alessandro Rossi; Dr Dimitrios Georgakopoulos; Dr Antti Kemppinen; Dr Masaya Kataoka

This project seeks to develop a new ultra-high-precision current standard, providing a missing link in today’s world standards for electrical measurement. Although highly accurate metrological standards are available for both voltage and resistance, there is no equivalent current standard available. The project aims to create nanoelectronic charge-pump devices that can generate a highly accurate output current. This project plans to use silicon-based single-electron-transistor technology to undertake high-precision measurements. The project expects to contribute to the technological basis for a new world current standard.



Professor Jinhong Yuan; Associate Professor Mark Reed; Professor Li Ping

This project aims to develop innovative large-scale antenna array communication techniques to improve the energy efficiency and spectrum efficiency of wireless data networks. The proposed massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) designs would exploit extremely large antenna apertures with very sharp radio beams to improve the throughput of the state-of-the-art MIMO by an order of magnitude. The project plans to devise novel and pragmatic signal processing and coding approaches for very large antenna arrays for this new type of wireless infrastructure. It is expected that the project outcomes would dramatically increase the data speed for 5G mobile and future WiFi networks and benefit users through pervasive wireless broadband access.



Associate Professor Wei Zhang; Professor Xiang-Gen Xia

This project aims to develop interference-resilient wireless data transmission techniques that can significantly improve the reliability and data rate of wireless communications. The expected outcomes of the research include new space-time coding techniques and interference coordination techniques. It is anticipated that the research will support the improvement of high-speed wireless communications and influence the development of broadband wireless access solutions.



Professor Nigel Lovell; Professor Francois Ladouceur; Dr Amr Al Abed (in collaboration with School of Biomedical Engineering)

The project plans to use a new class of liquid crystals – deformed helix ferroelectric (DHF) liquid crystal – to sense extracellular biopotentials. In response to an applied electrical field, it has been shown that DHF crystals can modulate a polarised light source with extraordinary sensitivity and linear response down to the microvolt range. Using this technology, the project plans to initially design and test a single optrode device on the bench, before in vitro testing and characterisation using two-photon microscopy. The final design would be a higher density sensor array using a fibre optic source and multiple optical couplers. This may support the development of new ways to implant sensing and diagnostic devices in the body.



ARC LIEF Grants 2016

Professor Andrew Dzurak; Professor David Jamieson; Professor David Reilly; Associate Professor Andrea Morello; Professor Michelle Simmons; Professor Darren Bagnall; Professor Allen Barnett; Professor Lloyd Hollenberg

Silicon low-pressure chemical vapour deposition facility: This project aims to complete Australia’s first manufacturing line for nanoscale devices. It aims to establish a low-pressure chemical vapour deposition system to complete the existing silicon complementary metal-oxide semiconductor process line. It is currently impossible to fabricate many devices compatible with industrial manufacture, limiting device reliability and path to commercialisation. The tool is designed to incorporate four furnace tubes for growing thin layers of electronic materials, including polycrystalline-silicon, epitaxial silicon, and silicon-nitride. One unique aspect will be growth of isotopically-enriched silicon-28 that is essential for spin-based quantum computing. The tool would support a wide range of projects nationally in silicon micro/nano-systems, advanced photovoltaics, and quantum technologies.



Associate Professor Andrea Morello; Dr Arne Laucht; Professor Andrew Dzurak; Dr Thomas Volz; Associate Professor Gabriel Molina Terriza

Ultra-low temperature facility for optical experiments: The project aims to establish a state-of-the-art facility to conduct optics and photonics experiments at ultra-low temperatures, by integrating an optical-access cryogen-free dilution refrigerator into an optics laboratory. Near absolute zero temperature, complex materials and engineered nanoscale devices exhibit striking quantum mechanical behaviour. Experimental access to photonics at millikelvin temperatures would enable a coherent quantum-mechanical interface between spins, charges, phonons and photons. This unique facility may help in designing the next generation of information, communication and metrology devices, such as quantum computers, single-photon sources and detectors, and nanoscale quantum-enhanced sensors.





Discovery Grants 2015

Prof John Fletcher, Dr Rukmi Dutta

Advanced fault tolerant drives for safety critical applications

2015: $95,000

2016: $91,100

2017: $95,000


A/Prof Andrea Morello, Prof Gerard Milburn, A/Prof Jeffrey C McCallum, Dr Catherine A Holmes, Dr Wojciech H Zurek

Crossing quantum classical boundaries in a single particle

2015: $140,000

2016: $163,000

2017: $140,000


Prof Sridevan Parameswaran, Prof Andrew Dempster, Dr Oliver Diessel, Dr Ediz Cetin, Dr Jude Ambrose (in collaboration with School of Computer Science and Engineering)

Designing Radiation-Tolerant Reconfigurable Systems for Space

2015: $110,000

2016: $110,300

2017: $120,000


Prof Muhammed F Rahman

A novel high bandwidth sensorless controller for IPM synchronous machines

2015: $110,000

2016: $105,500

2017: $110,000


Prof Rodica Ramer, Prof Raafar Mansour, Prof Roberto Sorrentino

Micro-electro-mechanical technologies and tuneable millimetre-wave systems

2015: $140,000

2016: $116,000

2017: $121,000


A/Prof Vijay Sivaraman, Prof Sanjay K Jha, Mr Diethelm Ostry, Prof Gene Tsudik

Lightweight security solutions for wearable healthcare sensor devices

2015: $110,000

2016: $98,800

2017: $114,000


Prof Jie Bao, Prof Maria Skyllas-Kazacos, Prof Vassilios G Agelidis (in collaboration with School of Chemical Engineering)

Control of Distributed Energy Storage System using Vanadium Batteries

2015: $130,000

2017: $101,700

2017: $109,000


Linkage Grants 2015


A/Prof Vijay Sivaraman, Dr Timothy Moors, Mr Adam Radford (CISCO Australia), Mr Warren Wainner (CISCO USA);

Duration: 2015-2018


Project Summary: The aim of this project is to develop novel frameworks and algorithms that improve video streaming experience across multiple interconnected content distribution networks. The novelty of the scheme is in optimally coupling cache server selection with network path control using software defined networking technology. The intended outcomes of this project are the development and demonstration of algorithms and mechanisms for efficient Internet content delivery to achieve unprecedented user experience. The proposed project is expected to lead to commercial outcomes with consequent economic and social benefits, while strengthening Australia’s leadership in the emerging area of software defined networking.
Total: $299,000


Prof Vassilios Agelidis , Prof Josep Pou; Dr Georgios Demetriades

Duration: 2015-2018


Project Summary: The project aims to develop advanced, modular, reconfigurable energy conversion systems utilising lithium-titanate batteries. Battery energy storage is critical to energy security and integration of increased renewable generation with the electricity grid. However, its high cost prohibits its wide commercial acceptance. The proposed system avoids a large number of series connections of batteries and raises the voltage by using series connection of high-frequency isolated converters for transformerless interconnection of such battery energy storage systems with the grid. The project outcomes include new grid support technologies.

Total: $328,995


Prof David Waite, Prof John Fletcher ,  Dr Peter Kovalsky, (with The School of Civil and Environmental Engineering)

Duration: 2015-2018

Partner Organisation:  MINCARB PTY LTD

Project Summary: This project aims to develop capacitive deionisation (CDI) for the decontamination of water. The specific goals are firstly to identify applications where CDI could cost-effectively make brackish, contaminated water usable. The project then intends to optimise CDI design and operating conditions to remove particular ions of concern and to develop approaches to energy recovery. The main outcome is intended to be a photovoltaic-powered CDI unit that is capable of stand-alone operation with optimal energy recovery and inbuilt monitoring, and control technology enabling cost-effective and sustainable operation.

Total: $560,000


A/Prof Vijay Sivaraman, Prof Matthew Roughan, A/Prof Mehran Abolhasan, Dr Jason A But, Prof Vijay Varadharajan, Dr Craig Russell, Dr Timothy Moors, Prof Farzad Safaei, A/Prof Marius Portmann, A/Prof Weifa Liang, Dr Mark Gregory, Prof Sanjay Jha, Prof David Taubman, Dr Hung X Nguyen, Dr Nickolas Falkner, Prof Guoqiang Mao, Prof Robin Braun, Prof Grenville Armitage, Dr Udaya Tupakula, Prof Jadwiga Indulska, A/Prof Peter Strazdins, Dr Raad Raad. 

Test bed for wide-area software defined networking research

2015: $270,000


ARC DECRA (Discovery Early Career Researcher Award) 2015 

Dr Tao Yang (supervisor Prof Jinhong Yuan)

Efficient Coding for Distributed-input Distributed-output Wireless Systems

2015: $125,000

2016: $125,000

2017: $125,000


Discovery Grants 2014

Prof David Taubman, A/Prof Vijay Sivaraman, Prof Hongkai Xiong, Prof John Woods
A novel API and associated algorithms will be delevoped to exploit the emerging technology of software defined networks (SDN) for improving the efficiency and responsiveness of interactive media browsing applications.
2014: $140,000
2015: $130,000
2016: $135,000
Prof Victor Solo
A growing number of applications such as satellite attitude estimation, pose estimation in computer vision and direction estimation in statistics require the study of random processes in Riemannian manifolds and Lie Groups. 
2014: $125,000
2015: $110,000
2016: $125,000
LIEF Grants 2014

Title: Ultra-low-temperature scanning gate facility for study of advanced nanostructure devices and materials

CIs: Hamilton, Prof Alexander R (UNSW) ; Pakes, Dr Christopher I (La Trobe); Fuhrer, Prof Michael S (Monash); Dzurak, Prof Andrew S (UNSW); Klochan, Dr Oleh V (UNSW); Culcer, Dr Dimitrie M (UNSW)

Total: $560,000.00

Lead Institution:   UNSW

Collaborating Organisation(s): La Trobe University, Monash University

Project Summary

Ultra low temperature scanning gate facility for study of advanced nanostructure devices and materials: Electronic devices and materials underpin a range of significant industries worldwide. However while there are numerous techniques for imaging the structure of a material, including X-rays, electron microscopy, atom probe tomography, and nuclear scattering, none allow us to see how the electrons and holes move inside a material or device. This project will create a new scanning gate microscope facility for imaging electrical current flow in advanced quantum devices and the new generation of topological insulators and atomically thin crystals such as graphene. The project will stimulate new studies of the next generation of electronic materials and devices, providing the underpinning knowledge for the future development of post silicon electronics.


LINKAGE Grants 2014

Prof. Andrew Dempster, Dr E. Cetin, Dr  O. Diessel, Mr K Parkinson

Partner Organisation: General Dynamics Corporation, New Zealand

Project Summary: This project aims to develop new methods for implementing satellite-based digital systems using reconfigurable hardware devices. The results aim to extend knowledge on the design of fault-tolerant systems and enable the use of off-the-shelf digital hardware in the implementation of satellite systems. The project aims to develop essential tools to assist in implementing fault-tolerant reconfigurable systems. These tools will be founded on the discovery of techniques needed for modifying a design into a form amenable to error recovery and for implementing the design in hardware. During the course of the project, these techniques will be demonstrated and tested in-orbit on the international QB50 CubeSat program
Total: $232,000


Prof. Andrew Dempster, Prof. L White, Mr J. Fleming

Partner Organisation: GPSat Systems Australia P/L

Project Summary: Modern infrastructure increasingly relies on the positioning and timing capabilities provided by the Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS). GNSS signals, however, are vulnerable to interference and spoofing attacks. This vulnerability is aggravated as satellite navigation becomes more central to the operation of airports, ports, railways, and communications systems. Building on from earlier work by University of New South Wales, University of Adelaide and GPSat Systems, this project aims to create a system for locating interference and spoofers to GNSS of any power in real time, providing layered monitoring and reactive mitigation solutions against interference and spoofing attacks.

Total: $361,087


Dr. Toan Phung, A/Pro T. Blackburn, Prof. E. Ambikairajah, Mr. P. McMullan

Partner Organisation:  Australian Strategic Technology Program

Project Summary: High voltage power cable systems rely on their insulation to withstand very severe electric stress without breakdown. Field testing of cables at normal frequency is not feasible, but with very low frequency excitation from mobile sources such testing is possible. The overarching aim of this project is to develop methods for interpretation of results from such measurements. It is intended that this will enable formulation of appropriate test procedures and better assessment of insulation conditions in service-aged cables. Also of considerable significance to fundamental research will be the project’s goal of a better physical understanding of insulation material behaviour when subject to very low frequency electric stress.

Total: $167,888


Discovery Grants 2013

Prof Victor Solo, Dr Syed A Pasha

Point processes system identification under simultaneity

Total: $330,000


Prof Andrey V Savkin

Robust control of mobile networked systems

Total: $300,000


Dr Hendra Nurdin

Model reduction of open Markov quantum systems: theory and algorithms

Total: $280,000


Prof Faz Rahman, Dr Rukmi Dutta, A/Prof John Fletcher, Dr Howard Lovatt

Dynamic model and mechanical sensorless controlled for a novel concentrated-winding interior permanent magnet machine for electric vehicles

Total: $380,000


Dr Roland Goecke & Colleagues (University of Canberra) and Dr Julien Epps (UNSW)

Affective sensing technology for the detection and monitoring of depression and melancholia

Total: $360,000


Discovery Grants 2012

Prof Andrew Dzurak, Adj/Prof Mikko Möttönen
Single electron pumping for current measurement standards
2012: $170,000
2013: $150,000
2014: $120,000

Precision measurement standards for electric current and voltage are necessary to ensure the safe and accurateoperation of much of the electronic equipment that underpins modern society. This project will develop a new ultra-high-precision current standard, providing a missing link in today's world standards for electrical measurement.

Dr Andrea Morello, A/Prof Jonathan Finley
The best of both worlds: electrically detected optical spectroscopy at the single atom limit
2012: $260,000
2013: $120,000
2014: $120,000

One atom, one photon, one electron, in a silicon crystal. We will demonstrate a novel technique to detect the absorption of light by a single atom, in the most significant environment for nanoelectronics and photovoltaics. Our technique will help unravel how light is turned into electricity at the most microscopic and fundamental level.

Prof Rodica Ramer, Dr Yingjie Guo, Dr Raafat Mansour
Advanced microwave and millimetre-wave microelectromechanical technologies for wireless communications
2012: $120,000
2013: $100,000
2014: $100,000

The project deals with the development and integration of radio frequency microelectromechanical devices that can reduce space and cost concomitant with enhanced performance. The outcomes of this proposal are devices with increased functionality required for multi-gigabit data rate transmission and millimetre wave wireless technologies.

Prof David Taubman, Dr Reji Mathew, Prof Michael Frater, A/Prof Mark Pickering
Compression and communication of single and multi-view video based on overlapping motion hint fields
2012: $120,000
2013: $100,000
2014: $100,000

This project explores a new way of communicating motion for video and multi-view (3D) applications, facilitating efficient interactive access to content. Outcomes will include new compression methods that avoid redundant transmission of motion side information, plus client/server technology that leverages metadata from smart surveillance cameras.

Prof Jinhong Yuan, A/Prof Robert Malaney, Dr Ingmar Land, Prof Lars Rasmussen
Physical layer security techniques for multiuser wireless networks
2012: $120,000
2013: $90,000
2014: $90,000

This project will develop innovative new security techniques for wireless networks. The novel techniques we develop will exploit the natural variability of wireless communication channels in order to deliver much-enhanced data security to a whole range of applications over the mobile internet.

Dr Guoqiang Mao, Dr Wei Zhang
Large scale highly dynamic wireless networks: architecture and communication strategies design
2012: $120,000
2013: $90,000
2014: $90,000

Administering Organisation: The University of Sydney

This project will develop novel techniques for the modelling, design and management of highly dynamic networks, with wireless vehicular networks for autonomous vehicles being a typical but not sole example. Social and economical benefits are expected in the areas of road traffic management and road safety, communication and environment protection.


LINKAGE Grants 2012

Dr Toan Phung, A/Prof Trevor Blackburn, Prof Eliathamby Ambikairajah, Dr Mohammad Salay Naderi, Mr Patrick
Improving grid performance: detection of arc faults and determination of energy losses in electricity distribution networks
2012: $60,000
2013: $40,000
2014: $40,000

This project will develop a monitoring system to address the critical need to ensure safe operations of overhead power lines, particularly in rural areas, and prevent bushfires caused by electrical faults. The research also enable monitoring of power losses in electricity distribution networks and improving the energy efficiency of the supply system.


2006 - 2011 ARC and linkage grants